This basket is a stunning piece from the Art Nouveau period-circa 1905. It is true silver overlay-NOT silver deposit!!! The silver is a good thickness, done in a lovely floral pattern & a little fancy basketweave. The silver is accented with exceptional hand engraved detail. Even the glass handle of the basket has been entirely covered in silver. Quality work & lovely design.
The silver overlay has no missing or loose pieces & no rips on rims. As will happen in silver overlay you do find the occasional pin point hole in the silver. I mean pin point! You do not see them with the naked eye but can find them with a 10 power loop. The basket has no silver content mark but has been tested & is guaranteed a minimum of 925 (sterling).
The bottom rim does have a mark of: W M Wise & Son. From what I can find out Wise was a jeweler/silversmith in Brooklyn. I found the company in existence as early as 1873 & as late as 1955. It was a common practice for a jeweler or department store to have their name on an item-not the makers-during the late 1800's & in the early 20th. century.
We attribute the glass to Loetz because of the glass rosettes at each base side of the handle which are covered with the silver overlay. One of those pin point holes I mentioned is on a rosette & with a loop you can see the glass color peeking through. A distinctive feature of Loetz baskets is the glass rosette at the applied point of the glass handle to the glass basket. There is no Loetz signature-but the majority of Loetz was unsigned.
The blown art glass basket is a clear rich avocado green, with a polished pontil on the base. It has a lovely ringing tone when I tap it with my nails. There are no deep scratches, chips, cracks, repairs to glass. You can find some original bubbles & impurities in the glass. I did find with intense inspection the occasional surface only, minuscule scratch from use. This basket was a prize possession & extremely well taken care of!!
This is a must have for an art glass or silver overlay collector. And an outstanding piece for the person who wants an attractive, tasteful decorative item for that special spot in their home. It would look wonderful with those Valentines Day roses in it! Size is a total of 13 1/2" tall with a 4" dia. base & is 8 1/4" at widest point.
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